MS in talks with Peter Chernin over XBL TV channel

Reports surface of proposal to raise XBL subs fee to fund exclusive programming

Microsoft is in talks with former News Corporation president Peter Chernin to offer an exclusive television channel to Xbox Live users, reports have suggested.

According to anonymous sources speaking to Bloomberg, the exec has been in meetings with the platform holder, and suggested raising the XBL subscription fee by $1 to $2 in order to fund programming aimed specifically at the service's young, male audience.

The channel would be jointly owned by Chernin and Microsoft, said one source, and feature both original programmes and re-runs of shows.

Chernin was formerly the president and COO of News Corp, and chairman and CEO of Fox Entertainment Group. He now runs his own production company - Chernin Entertainment - and his publicist confirmed he was looking at the digital space an avenue of distribution.

"Peter is talking to lots of people about lots of ideas in the digital space," said publicist Allan Mayer, although he wouldn't comment on whether meetings with Microsoft had taken place.

Microsoft currently charges $7.99 per month for access to the XBL service, and also allows Netflix film rentals for an additional $8.99 a month.

Paying users of the service reached 23 million in February worldwide, with concurrent users reaching an all-time high of 2.3 million in January.

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Latest comments (5)

Jason Avent VP, Studio Head, NaturalMotion7 years ago
No thanks. XBL is quite expensive enough already.
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Michael Abraham game designer 7 years ago
i wonder how people like the BBC will respond to the idea of tv channels via consoles (i.e. in relation to TV liscensing, etc).
also it seems a lil counter-intuitive to have a "tv channel" on a console in the 1st place, what with how the "on demand" style of watching is becoming popular. wouldn't it make more sense to just let people purchase and then download entire series to their xbox instead of raising the fee for everyone, regardless of if they will be using the service or not?

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Michael Abraham on 21st April 2010 2:20pm

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Robert Willard Producer/Director, Phail-Safe Interactive7 years ago
Depending on how this is set up it could be interesting. I would hope they would leave it as something to subscribe to rather than raise fees for everyone. That way if you have no intrest in it, then you wouldn't have to pay extra for it.
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Mike Jones Indie Editor, Brutal Gamer7 years ago
Considering I watch very little TV as it is, I don't see myself watching this. I also don't think it's fair that everyone should have to pay more for their Xbox Live subscription to fund this. As said above, they should make it a seperate thing that you can choose to pay for if you wish,
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Pete Thompson Editor 7 years ago
No Thanks, We have Sky Player on the 360 and BBC iplayer on the ps3, Why the need for more tv channels, I put my consoles on to play games, If i want to watch tv i'll watch sky HD..
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